Tag: Centennial High School

COVID-19 Quarantine Records

Words: Mariam Abd-El-Shafy

 On Friday, March 13, Governor Hogan announced that all Maryland Schools would shut down until further notice to limit the spread of the Coronavirus. It has been over two months since the start of the COVID-19 Quarantine. Students in isolation have decided to share their stories of life during the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic.

 

April 15, 2020

 

People say the Class of 2020 had visions 

for their senior year. We were excited for pep rally, 

senior week, prom, and graduation only to now be quarantined 

and everything be CANCELLED.

 

Quarantine is SO “fun.” 

I was totally NOT waiting for graduation. 

For all my years of high school to pay off 

for this glorious moment 

to walk across the stage 

and be handed my diploma 

only for it to be CANCELLED 

and the diplomas be handed out virtually.  

 

Prom. 

Supposedly the most memorable part 

of senior year. Out dancing with friends, 

dressing fancy with my hair and nails done, and

maybe I could have even gotten a date

only for it to be 

CANCELLED.

 

Now, senior week…

I could not wait to prank my school 

only to be sitting at home pranking my family 

which is SO “fun.”
Personally I have never been on a cruise

and was totally NOT looking forward to going on some 

fancy cruise with my fellow classmates 

only for it to be once again…

CANCELLED.

 

And for the finale…

Pep rally.

The most spirited and competitive time of the year 

Events that actually mattered. 

Where everyone in every grade

comes together to celebrate the school spirit only for it to be…

You guessed it… 

CANCELLED!

 

And that is a wrap folks. 

That is my senior year in a nutshell. 

CANCELLED. 

  -Alaura Wills 

 

April 16, 2020

 

If you had told me in September of 2019 that I would not see the last three months of my senior year, that leaving the house without a mask would be illegal, and millions across the globe would be hospitalized at a rapidly increasing rate, I would have told you that sounds like the plot of a poorly written apocalyptic movie.

My senior year has been taken from me. “The glory year of high school,” as many adults have deemed it, has come to a sudden end, with no closure or final days. The year that has been described in lengthy stories from family members, romanticized by every coming of age film, celebrated for centuries, had suddenly vanished forever, on a random Friday in March.

It is currently 12:44am on the sixth (maybe eighteenth?) Monday of quarantine. I am not sure of the exact date. All of the days blur together. It is this weird phenomenon where they simultaneously move in slow motion yet seem to be over in just seconds. I thought I was going insane, that is, until the internet unanimously agreed with this feeling too.

Anyway, I cannot sleep. Typically my internal clock has me asleep by 10 pm and awake by 7 am, like an old lady. But, my head seems to be full of questions, questions of how or why the class of 2020 deserved to be born during 9/11 and graduate during the global pandemic of 2020.

But maybe, it is not a matter of deserving. It was a matter of chance, and because of that chance, we are powerful. The class of 2020 has arguably fundamentally changed the political and social aspects of modern society. We have protested for reform, climate change activism, given TEDx talks (wink), written books, composed, and created. We have thrived, even when it seemed as though the world was against us.

The stars aligned to create a whirlwind of catastrophe and tragedy for the class of 2020. We will forever be written into history books, lectures, and stories documenting this lifetime in which the world changed before our eyes. A time where things went silent. Parks empty, grocery stores desolate, and stillness across cities.

So in these moments, where I cannot fall asleep because my mind is plagued by terrorizing thoughts, I should remember. We are here for a reason. We are together, and that is more powerful than any global pandemic.

  -Natalie Knight-Griffin

 

April 17, 2020

 

“Isolation”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Children of the Day”

 

 

 

 

  -Deja Grissom

 

April 18, 2020

 

Two weeks ago I would have been really happy about school assignments because that way I would be able to keep myself occupied. Now I am starting to regret it. The teachers are all great, but it is such a weird transition of going from doing nothing to actually seeing and having classes with them. They actually gave time consuming assignments! If online teaching had been put in place a week after school closed, I would have loved this little amount of work. But after a month of being out of practice, reading a single chapter feels like torture!

  -Meenakshi Adiyodi

 

April 19, 2020

 

I felt extremely stressed all day because I keep seeing incidents of hate against Asians online because of the Coronavirus. Quite honestly, it has made me feel afraid for myself the next time I go out. Not necessarily of being verbally harassed, but being physically beat up and bloody and bruised. I am extremely weak, I cannot even throw a good punch. 

  -Regina Wang 

 

April 20, 2020

 

“The Watcher”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Joe Daly

 

April 21, 2020

 

Life on repeat

I sit in my room

with my journal on my lap.

It’s filled with words, pages 

upon pages 

upon pages

of words.

My pen raced across the paper…

for the first few days.

Every so often I have a lot to say.

Other times, I have nothing.

“Today was like every other day” is becoming a phrase that I use all too often.

I do not want every day to be alike

but they seem to morph into one.

An eternal groundhog day.

Yet,

every day seems more important than groundhog day. 

  -Francesca Cumello 

 

April 22, 2020

 

“Hiding House” 

Waking up to the sun’s rays.

I do not know the time.

I do not know what day it is,

but I do know it is mine. 

No need to get dressed.

I have nowhere to go.

No bus for school,

Not because of snow. 

We are not supposed to go outside,

six feet apart we stay.

I cannot see my friends,

except for the digital way.

I am stuck inside all day every day

with only my family with me.

I do not mind them every now and then

but I really need to be free.

The only way to the outside world

is through Google Meet.

When I see the other’s faces,

the feeling is bittersweet.

I only have a little time

to be here with them.

I fear that when the year is over,

we will no longer be friends.

So what do I do?

It is hard to say.

I am not allowed my phone,

and my computer’s time slips away.

I sketch and read

sometimes I watch TV.

Or maybe I will sleep a while longer,

or perhaps dance without worry.

I now fear the idea

of quarantine.

At first I thought

it sounded like a dream.

No need for school

no need for work.

But now I see

that it is a jerk.

I have nearly gone crazy

I need to go outside.

I need my school bus 

so I can catch a ride.

I want my school back

to the way things were.

But maybe that will not happen

and time will go by like a blur.

  -J’Pia Isbell

 

April 23, 2020

 

“Rotten Isolation”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  -Mariam Abd El-Shafy 

 

April 24, 2020

 

Dear Diary,

It has been a long time since I have seen my friends. I miss them so much. Senior prom is supposed to be in three days. I was looking forward to it so much, it is a real downer to lose it now. All our senior events are being cancelled, which sucks. We all worked 13 years for these last weeks of school, and now we do not get our reward. It sucks.  

 I have found new ways to keep in contact with my friends! I stay up until early in the morning talking with them about everything except the virus. We try to keep it light and stay positive!  

Online learning has been tough. I really prefer talking with my teachers in person. And seeing my friends in between classes. I miss walking through the crowded halls. I miss tuning out teachers when they go off on unrelated tangents and laughing with my friends. With online classes, you really can not do that.

I really miss going to school.  I never thought I would, but I am really bummed out about all my senior events getting cancelled and having to go so long without seeing my friends. I am going stir crazy locked up in this house for months on end.  I do not like it one bit.

Hopefully this is all over soon.

  -Hannah Murphy 

 

April 25, 2020

 

“Quarantine”

It’s raining outside

Has been raining for weeks

I used to like the rain

But when will it stop? 

 

It started as a soft drizzle 

We could still go outside

and jump in the tiny puddles 

Wearing just a light rain coat 

 

But then the rain fell harder 

The driveways are slippery, 

The sidewalks are muddy, 

All the flowers in the garden have drowned 

 

It kept on raining harder than before 

Everyone stayed shielded inside 

We only left when we had to, 

Wearing layers upon layers of coats, hats, and umbrellas 

 

But it was still raining

Why was it still raining? 

We did what we were supposed to do 

Where’s the rainbow after the storm? 

 

It is not fair

The rain was nice at first 

But I do not like getting wet 

It is still raining.

  -Anushka Parab 

 

April 26, 2020

 

“Sluggish” 

 

 

 

 

 

  -Maria Daly 

 

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Boys’ Lacrosse and Baseball Spotlight

Words: Shawn Kruhm 

Photos Contributed By: Darian Avery, Caleb McClatchey, and Zach Grable

On the week of April 20, Centennial celebrated their seniors on the boys’ lacrosse and baseball teams.

The Eagles highlighted baseball’s four seniors: Sean Cutick, Caleb McClatchey, Liam Wood, and Zack Steen. 

Despite the boys’ season being cut short, they are all grateful for the time they had with the team over the past four years. The senior parents brought them together one last time to have a small and safe celebration on the baseball field. 

Steen will continue his baseball career in college as he has committed to play Varsity baseball at Bloomsburg University. 

“The baseball team meant quite a bit to me,” said Steen. “We all got along well and we just had fun playing baseball together.” 

Along with the baseball team, Centennial honored the 13 seniors on the boys’ lacrosse team: Darian Avery, Connor Carpenter, Jackson Decarlo, Zach Grable, Chris Guerra, Evan Keller, David Kim, Shawn Kruhm, Jake Rower, Ty Sams, Kieran Senisi, Liam Sullivan, and Zeyu Zhong. Each senior received a decorated sign which included their name and number. 

Sams and Senisi will both be taking their talent to college as they both committed to play lacrosse for their college Varsity team. Sams will be attending Holy Cross this fall and Senisi will be attending St. Mary’s. 

“It was devastating to have the last chance to play on that field stripped away without our control,” said Sams. “The lacrosse team was one of my favorite memories from high school, if not my favorite.”

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

One-on-One with Editor-in-Chief: Piper Berry 2019-20

Video by: Julia Stitely

As the year comes to a close, Delanie Tucker, the next Editor-in-Chief of the Wingspan, interviews Piper Berry over Zoom about her experience as Editor-in-Chief during the 2019-20 school year.

Click here to view the video!

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Senior Spotlight

The Wingspan is proud to present a new page on our website, CHS Senior Athletes in the Spotlight: Spring 2020! This page features the senior varsity athletes who were unable to play in their respective spring sports due to the COVID-19 shutdown of high school athletic events.

We offer a huge shout out and thank you to Ms. Prevosto for working hard in gathering the spotlight info and then sharing it with the Centennial Community.

The Wingspan presents the information she has gathered in a video spotlight to share and serve as an archival document, celebrating our senior spring varsity athletes. Although you were denied the opportunity to shine on the field, we will always recognize you for the contributions you have made over the years as Eagle athletes. We are proud of you, and we wish you the best in your future endeavors, both on and off the field.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Teens in Essential Work

Words: Ellie Zoller-Gritz

Photos Contributed By: Julia Stitely, Noorie Kazmi and Kheira Tuck

Every rule comes with an exception. During a nationwide time of panic, there has been a select group of people who have continued to work, despite stay at home orders. These essential workers are allowed to continue at their jobs if their line of work is deemed necessary enough. However, many of these essential workers are teenagers.

As an essential worker, a teen could work at a restaurant open for delivery or takeout, a gas station, retirement home, or any other business that remains open. 

Lutheran Village at Miller’s Grant is a retirement home in Ellicott City, one that employs several Centennial High School students. These employees are considered health care workers, and are tasked with protecting the residents of Miller’s Grant from COVID-19. It is vital that they are very careful to not come in contact with anyone who could be carrying the virus, as the elders they work around would be extremely high-risk if they were to contract it.

To further ensure the safety of the residents, the staff is required to get temperature checks upon arrival at work, to wear masks during shifts, to fill out a mandatory questionnaire, and to practice basic procedures like social distancing and hand washing.

Since their working conditions have changed, teenagers now have the responsibility of being the frontline of defense against the virus, while also balancing distance learning and their own personal health.

The staff’s jobs have changed from serving in dining halls to delivering food and groceries to residents at their homes and apartments. They are also doing activities such as noodle ball, painting, trivia, games, and more with the assisted living and health care unit. The residents in these units are not allowed to have visitors until further notice.

Kheira Tuck, a senior at Wilde Lake, has been working at Miller’s Grant in these trying times. 

“[Residents] cherish every single interaction they have,” said Tuck. Even though the residents must stay six feet away, they still enjoy seeing other residents and staff from their balconies and when they pass by their apartments.

Teenagers who work at grocery stores are also powering through the stress that COVID-19 has brought with bulk buying and overstocking.

“In the morning, the store is usually crowded with people stocking up on whatever had been announced online to be scarce the day before,” explained Mia Zara Bridges, a senior at Centennial who works at sprouts.

Although some people are understanding towards the employees, she still wants customers to realize that she doesn’t have control over supply amounts, and becoming frustrated will not solve the problem. 

Despite the need for these essential workers, some teenagers have been pulled from work by parents, due to school and other reasons. By staying home, these teenagers are still doing their part to keep everyone safe from COVID-19.

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

How COVID-19 Has Affected the NCAA Recruitment Process

Words: Jeramy Stavlas

Through the midst of the pandemic that is sweeping over our country, high school athletes across the nation are worried about their futures in their respective sport. The National Collegiate Athletic Association, otherwise known as the NCAA, has taken many precautions to ensure the safety of athletes while doing what they can to continue the recruiting process.

The NCAA Division I and Division II programs are halting all in-person recruiting activity until May 31 in what they are referring to as a “dead period.” The Division III program will extend their “dead period” through June 15. However, recruits may still be contacted through video-chats and calls for all three divisions.

Another year of eligibility will be granted to NCAA spring-season athletes but not for winter sports, as the majority of their season was wrapped up before the COVID-19 outbreak. The extra year of eligibility will affect athletes in sports such as baseball, softball, lacrosse, golf, track and field, tennis, rowing, men’s volleyball, and women’s water polo.

These changes are very hard for high school spring-season athletes, as the extra year of eligibility for the college athletes can affect the recruitment of the incoming class of ‘24. As many of the seniors are returning for another year, the class of ‘24 may not have as many available spots. However, coaches and teams across the country are looking to give out more scholarships this year to make up for as much of the problem as they can. This may not guarantee that there will be a typical number of available spots on teams, but it will be increased from previous years.

Centennial senior Zack Steen, who is committed to Bloomsburg University to play baseball, believes that this change could end up benefiting younger athletes.

“I think the extra eligibility for seniors will definitely make it tougher, but in the end I feel like it’s best for me, because it’ll make me work harder to earn playing time,” expressed Steen. 

The loss in revenue from this lost spring sports season may cause complications for teams looking to give out extra scholarships next season. There is a possibility that some smaller sports programs may have to be cut, and some programs will be forced to give out fewer scholarships than usual, which could result in more walk-ons and smaller roster sizes.  

As far as it goes for high school athletes, the best way students can secure a spot on the team would be to keep in contact with the coaching staff, keep their grades up through online schooling, and of course, stay healthy.

“I have been keeping in touch with the coach on what I can do to keep preparing for next year,” stated Olivia Reese, a Centennial senior committed to Shepherd University for softball.

One thing that’s not being affected by the virus is the players’ motivation to work hard towards their respective sports. “I actually want to play more than ever,” explained Steen, motivated for next year’s season.

For updates on how the NCAA will manage through the COVID-19 breakout, visit their website at ncaa.org. They also post frequent updates on their Twitter, @NCAA.

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

HCPSS School Facilities Close for the Remainder of the School Year

Words: Sarah Paz

On Wednesday, May 6th, State Superintendent of School Karen Salmon announced that all Maryland school facilities will be closed for the remainder of the school year.

In an online letter, Superintendent Michael Martirano announced that the Howard County Public School System will subsequently be closed.

Though the end of the virtual school year is yet to be decided, the last day of school for seniors will remain May 20.

Phase 3 of the HCPSS Continuity of Learning program will continue until the end of the school year. Though all its school facilities are closed, HCPSS will continue to work remotely, and will persevere in developing better distance learning models with the input of teachers. 

Howard County is also developing plans for “Recovery of Learning” for the reopening of schools in the fall. It is currently waiting for the guidance of the Maryland State Department of Education guidelines for these plans as well as plans about summer school programs. 

Food distribution centers will remain open until the end of the school year. 

Martirano encourages everyone to remain safe and patient while waiting for further announcements. 

For more information regarding school closings, please click here.

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Chromebook Distribution in Howard County

Words: Sasha Allen

Photo: Adithi Soogoor

Online learning is difficult for everyone, but for students and staff across the county who do not have access to a device at home, it is nearly impossible. In order to give everyone the same opportunity to participate in online classes, the Howard County Public School System constructed a plan that would allow them to provide those in need with Chromebooks.

The county collected data regarding how many HCPSS students and staff would need provided technology through an online survey that was sent to all students and parents in the county.

On Wednesday, April 8, there were technology pick-up stations for highschoolers at numerous schools throughout the county, including Centennial High School. All of the social distancing guidelines were followed, and everyone was required to stand 6 feet apart.

Despite these precautions, the pick-up stations presented health concerns in regard to COVID-19. For the elementary and middle schoolers who still need Chromebooks, the distribution process was modified.

“To better enforce social distancing and safeguard the health of staff, students, and families, HCPSS will ship all technology devices through FedEx directly to the students who need to borrow them,” stated the HCPSS website. 

The same process will now be used for staff members who may need access to technology. Although the process is safer, it is taking more time to deliver the computers. According to HCPSS, the delay is caused by the number of requests as well as backlog through FedEx. 

By giving all students access to technology, HCPSS is trying to continue learning for everyone across the county as they are stuck inside their homes. 

For more information on technology distribution, visit hcpss.org.

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Art Students Stuck in Quarantine

Words: Natalie Keane

Centennial students have been out of school since March 13, and the coronavirus quarantine is still in full effect. Art students at Centennial, amidst the confusion and concern, are now tasked with creating their art exclusively from home, with no access to the materials or resources provided in the classroom. 

For some of these students, this disruption of their normal lives is difficult, because they lose the daily structure and human interaction that provides motivation for them to complete work. But for others, the lack of obligations during the day allows them to fully focus on their artwork, unlike their previous schedules at school.

Maria Daly, a junior in Art 3, says that they have continued to make art throughout the quarantine. These days, despite all the uncertainty, it comes easier to them.

“I’ve definitely had more motivation to do art since quarantine started,” they explained. “It sounds weird, but I think it’s because I don’t have the pressure of having to fit ‘good’ art into my schedule between afterschool clubs, homework, and just general life, whereas now I don’t have 80 [percent] of those things to make me feel pressured in that way.”

Most of Daly’s pieces over the past few weeks have been quarantine-inspired. Their inspiration for their work largely comes from the people they connect with, and since they haven’t seen anyone for the past few weeks outside of their family, they’ve been creating more self-portraits.

“I haven’t really seen very many other people, and a lot of my mood has been impacted by that as well,” they expressed.

Mia Bridges, a senior in Art 3, says that she, too, has been able to create more art now that she is out of school.

“It’s come easier to me [because] I know I have lots of free time,” Bridges said. “Since I’m not bound by school art assignments, I can do pretty much whatever I want.” 

The shut-down has moved her to start taking inspiration from social media and artists she finds online. With less material to draw from in the real world, the internet is the next best thing.

“I’ve been taking inspiration from the artists I follow on social media… people I see on Instagram that wear really cool clothes and have fun hairstyles,” explained Bridges. “When I see people like that it inspires me to want to paint portraits of them, or just sketch them.”

Gabby Cherry, a senior in Art 4, unlike Daly and Bridges, finds that it became more difficult to make art after the quarantine began.

“I would say that my motivation to make art has decreased significantly, but I’m starting to slowly get back into creating by working on smaller projects and sketchbook pages,” she said. 

Cherry is in the highest level of AP art, which requires her to produce much more work for her portfolio. “I put a lot of pressure on myself this year to make larger works for my portfolio and shows, and it kind of took some of the fun out of creating,” she stated. “I feel like it’s important to use [other artist’s] work as a source of inspiration, rather than a way to put myself down.” 

Despite the uncertainty, Daly believes that people will continue to find ways to make art, even if it’s not in the same way as before.

“I feel like a lot of people’s art will reflect the isolation we’re all feeling at this time, and I feel like this will change what art people will be making for a while.”

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.